All posts by Jim Dvorak

Managing Director of SOEC since 2005. Veteran of the Southern California automotive scene. Involvement with Saleen dates back to the mid 1990s.

VIDEO: STEVE SALEEN INTERVIEW ON DRIVERS TALK RADIO

From our friends at Drivers Talk Radio.

Published on Jul 16, 2019
Drivers Talk sits down with legendary racer and vehicle manufacturer Steve Saleen for an intimate interview on his racing days and how that led to the birth of the Saleen Mustang. See pics of his infamous launch of a Shelby Mustang off a 200ft cliff, along with never before seen pics of his early racing days where he rubbed shoulders with some of the biggest racing names in the world.

Our Bring A Trailer game show “Hit the Gas or Sniffing Gas” returns and we get the results of the boys bidding on the 1973 Datsun 240z and watch them take a crack at minty 1971 Lotus Elan Sprint. Molly heads over to the Fabulous Fords Forever show and uncovers a “Hot Pants Pinto,” Sunbeam Tiger, and some other unusual Fords. Plus Drivers Talk News takes a sneak peek at the 2021 Ford F150, along with many other juicy news tidbits.

Click here to participate in the discussion.

[Source: Drivers Talk Radio]

SALEEN CUP RACING SERIES DEBUTS AT PORTLAND INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY

S1 Cup Logo
SALEEN CUP RACING SERIES DEBUTS AT PORTLAND INTERNATIONAL RACEWAY

Twelve drivers in two distinct classes competed in Portland, July 12-14, as part of an “arrive and drive” racing series showcasing the new Saleen 1 sports car

Brandon Davis of Sonoma, Calif. and Paul Terry of Nephi, Utah led 50-minute race, taking top podium finish during inaugural Saleen Cup event

PORTLAND, Ore. (July 16, 2019) – History was made at Portland International Raceway this week as California-based Saleen Automotive officially returned to motorsports with its debut of the Saleen Cup – an “arrive-and-drive” series designed to demonstrate the capabilities of its recently announced Saleen 1 turbocharged mid-engine sports car.

Brandon Davis of Sonoma, Calif. and Paul Terry of Nephi, Utah led a hotly contested 50-minute race on Sunday, July 14 as part of a shared team in the Saleen Cup “Pro-Am” class, taking top honors at the inaugural event. As one of the most successful marques in GT racing history, the Portland race marked a significant milestone for Saleen Automotive, led by legendary racing driver and high-performance vehicle pioneer Steve Saleen.

“We’re extremely proud of our Saleen Cup debut in Portland and our company’s official return to motorsports,” said Steve Saleen, CEO and founder of Saleen Automotive.

“This series serves as our platform to develop the Saleen 1 street model and it’s already proving to be very competitive on the track. We’re thankful for our team drivers and the Saleen crew for their major effort during this event and look forward to the next race in Watkins Glen.”

The Saleen Cup delivers a professional-quality racing experience, with a grid of fully prepared Saleen 1 Cup Cars featuring Iconic, Contemporary and Saleen racing liveries in bold, designer colorways. Full trackside support and hospitality amenities add to the professional-level racing experience. The cars are prepared and transported to each race by Saleen, so it represents a true “arrive and drive” series that offers a fast-tracked entry into motorsports.

A Pro-Amateur (Pro-Am) class invites experienced drivers to be among the first to spend time behind the wheel of the new 450hp turbocharged 2.2-liter, four-cylinder Saleen 1 Cup Car. The Pro-Am class debuts in Portland with eight drivers, including Martina Kwan; Brandon Davis; Paul Terry; Johan Schwartz; Zachary Lee; Bryce Miller and Drake Kemper – plus veteran driver and Steve Saleen’s daughter, Molly Saleen.

The Saleen Cup’s “Young Drivers” class presents a unique opportunity for prospective young drivers who are looking to start a career in professional motorsports. The four entries in the Young Drivers class at Portland include: Austin Riley; Cameron Lawrence; Hanna Zellers and Carter Fartuch.

Portland Results – Pro-Am Drivers Class:

First Place – (#4) Brandon Davis (USA) / Paul Terry (USA)
Second Place – (#2) Zachary Lee (USA) / Bryce Miller (USA)
Third Place – (#6) Molly Saleen (USA) / Johan Schwartz (USA)

Portland Results – Young Drivers Class:

First Place – (#12) Austin Riley (CAN) / Carter Fartuch (USA)
Second Place – (#71) Hanna Zellers (USA)
Third Place – (#9) Cameron Lawrence (USA)

The Saleen Cup is presented via a partnership with SRO Motorsports Group, and runs concurrently with the Blancpain GT World Challenge America. Trackside tire support for the entire Saleen Cup is provided by series sponsor Continental Tires. In addition to offering prospective drivers and enthusiasts a turnkey, once-in-a-lifetime racing opportunity, the category champions in the Saleen Cup will each secure a factory seat driving in Saleen’s GT4 entry for the entire 2020 season. The Saleen Cup schedule includes four events through October 2019:

  • Portland International Raceway (Ore.) – July 12-14, 2019
  • Watkins Glen (NY) – August 30 – Sept. 1, 2019
  • Road America (Wis.)– Sept. 20-22, 2019
  • Grand Finale (Las Vegas) – Oct. 18-20, 2019

For more information on the Saleen Cup, visit www.SaleenCup.com. For more information on the Saleen 1 model, visit www.Saleen.com, or follow Saleen on social by using on Facebook at Facebook.com/Saleen, or by using @Saleen on Twitter and @Saleen on Instagram.

About Saleen Automotive, Inc.

Saleen is dedicated to transforming the transportation experience. For over 35 years, the California-based automotive manufacturer has redefined driving through high-performing vehicles that combine championship-winning racing pedigree with innovative technology and distinctive styling.

From the first Saleen Mustang in 1984 to the legendary S7 in 2000 and the groundbreaking new Saleen 1, founder Steve Saleen has continually set the bar for vehicle design and performance engineering on streets and racetracks worldwide. In addition to its distinctive Saleen Signature and Saleen Original vehicle lines, Saleen offers a wide variety of technical parts, lifestyle accessories and apparel for those with a passion for performance. Learn more at www.saleen.com.

Contacts
Media Contact:
Saleen PR – Collin Whitley
cwhitley@Saleen.com

[Source: Saleen Automotive]

SIX CARS SET FOR SALEEN CUP DEBUT AT PORTLAND

By: JOHN DAGYS on July 11, 2019
Original Article: SPORTSCAR365.COM

Saleen Cup set for launch at Portland International Raceway…

A total of six cars are set to take part in the inaugural Saleen Cup races at Portland International Raceway this weekend.

Initially set to launch at Sonoma Raceway last month, the new single-make series featuring Saleen S1 Cup cars was postponed due to production delays of the 450-horsepower race car.

The arrive-and-drive series, running on the SRO Motorsports America weekend, will feature a number of notable sports car racing drivers, including GT veterans Brandon Davis, Cameron Lawrence and Bryce Miller as well as Molly Saleen, the daughter of Saleen Automotive CEO Steve Saleen.

Each of the six cars will carry heritage liveries from the motorsports world, including a throwback design from the Saleen Mustang racing program in the 1990s.

The Saleen Cup, as first revealed by Sportscar365 last year, will feature two 50-minute races with a mandatory pit stop and driver change.

Additional rounds are planned at the SRO America events at Watkins Glen International, Road America and Las Vegas Motor Speedway this year, with the champion receiving a fully-paid drive in the manufacturer’s planned GT4 car in the 2020 Pirelli GT4 America series.

Saleen Cup, Portland Drivers
Saleen Cup, Portland Drivers

John Dagys is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Sportscar365 as well as the recently launched e-racing365 Web site for electric racing. Dagys spent eight years as a motorsports correspondent for FOXSports.com/SPEED Channel, and contributes to other publications worldwide.

[Source: sportscar 365]

SALEEN ESTABLISHES RESEARCH FACILITY IN CHINA

By: CHINA DAILY on June 17, 2019

Saleen establishes research facility in China
Saleen establishes research facility in China

United States sports car maker Saleen announced last week in Beijing the establishment of an automobile strategic research center with local authorities in Rugao city in East China’s Jiangsu province.

The facility will serve as a think tank to share advanced technologies, according to the carmaker.

The brand Saleen was established in 1983 by race car driver Steve Saleen. It is found not only in races but movie blockbusters like Transformers and Iron Man.

In 2009, Jiangsu Saleen Automotive Technology Co was established in China.

The research center, in the Rugao economic technology development zone, is designed to offer realistic and forward-looking studies to assist the industry development, said Charles Wang, chairman and CEO of Jiangsu Saleen.

He said the center will also provide strong support and guarantees on product research and development, layout, corporate strategy and future mobility solutions for the carmaker.

The center has already attracted 100 senior experts and industry technology leaders, including heads of the China Society of Automotive Engineers and experts of Tsinghua University.

At the founding ceremony on Tuesday, the center signed agreements with the Automotive Technology Information Research Institute under the China Automotive Technology and Information Center and the China Auto Lightweight Technology Innovation Strategic Alliance.

As China and its auto industry face the challenge of transforming from a big auto country to a globally competitive one, the center would launch 10 projects in three fields: automotive environment, advanced technologies and automotive cultures to help solve the common problems confronting Chinese carmakers.

Zhan Jingjing, vice-president of Jiangsu Saleen, said she expects the projects to yield results soon.

Fu Yuwu, head of the Society of Automotive Engineers of China, said that the center will serve as an exchange platform for auto industry researchers.

They can learn from each other and achieve win-win results, he said.

Jiangsu Saleen is working on the local production of cars in China.

Two plants are under construction in the city of Rugao with an investment of 17.8 billion yuan ($2.57 billion), according to Wang.

He said one of the factories will produce 50,000 pure electric vehicles and 20,000 super cars annually.

The other factory plans to deliver 150,000 cars a year.

He added that the carmaker will showcase its products later this year, which will include urban electric sports cars, super cars and sports SUVs.

[Source: China Daily]

SALEEN BUILDS ORANGE FURY S302 BLACK LABEL

From Saleen Automotive.

Our newest creation, an Orange Fury Black Label. If this doesn’t grab your attention we give up!!!!!

Click here to participate in the discussion.

[Source: Saleen Automotive]

GRASSROOTS MOTORSPORTS: CLASSIC COOL | SALEEN MUSTANG

Classic Cool
The Saleen Mustang

By: DAVID S. WALLENS on May 28, 2019
Original Article: GRASSROOTSMOTORSPORTS.COM

Time for a little history lesson. Don’t worry, the test will be open book. Back in the `60s, retired racer Carroll Shelby added enough spice to the then-new Mustang to turn it from hot to hotter. Today a legit one is a six-figure proposition–or more, as a one-of-one, GT40-powered Shelby GT500 Super Snake just sold for $2.2 million.

Now let’s jump forward. Steve Saleen, also a driver, followed a similar recipe and likewise offered his own hotted-up Mustangs through select Ford dealerships. The Saleen Mustang debuted for 1984, with the big performance upgrade being its Racecraft suspension: stiffer springs, Bilstein dampers, Goodyear Eagle GT tires and Hayashi alloy wheels.

The Saleen package also included some visual flair, like an `80s-appropriate aero kit; a leather-wrapped steering wheel and shift knob; and, of course, the requisite badges. Also standard: an Escort radar detector. In 1984 the Saleen package retailed for $4195 and could only be added to a Mustang L or LX coupe fitted with the 5.0-liter engine. Figure about $7100 for the Mustang itself.

Saleen offered modified Mustangs throughout the entire Fox-body run–and continues to reworks Ford’s latest. The firm tweaked the formula during the Fox-body years expanding to include upgrades like five-lug hubs, Hurst shifters and straight-through exhausts. Convertible and T-top cars were eventually put under the knife as well.

The firm offered more horsepower, too. The 1989 Saleen SSC celebrated the Mustang’s 25th birthday by adding a built engine, while a Vortech supercharger became optional for 1992, the year before the end of the Fox-body run.

Here’s the take-home message regarding these Fox-body Saleens: While the aftermarket has always offered the same upgrades, these cars have legit collector appeal. Those six-figure Shelbys? At one time they were just inexpensive used cars.

WHY YOU WANT ONE

• In a sea of Mustangs, here are the ones that stand out. Those now-iconic rocker panel stripes plus the Saleen windshield banner came standard.

• These were the days of a 55 mph national speed limit and 85 mph speedometers. A 170 mph clock was part of the original recipe.

• Saleen built as many as a few hundred Fox-body cars per year, so while rare, they’re not impossible to find. Complete year-by-year specs can be found on the Saleen Club of America website.

• The holy grail of Fox-body Saleens is the 1993 SA10. Only nine were built, each one to order. They all look the same, though: black hatchbacks sporting yellow and white graphics.

• A little birdy recently hinted that collector insurance quotes for Fox-body Mustangs are on the rise, so if you’d like to get ahead of the curve, this may be your chance.

PRACTICAL GUIDANCE

Our expert:
Mark LaMaskin

Performance Autosport, Inc.
performanceautosport.com
(804) 358-2505

They’re the `57 Chevy of our generation. I think it’s the time to buy Saleens and put them away. It’s a huge in-the-future collectible.

Stay away from modified cars. You don’t know who built it. Even a modified 5.0-liter Mustang isn’t that fast.

Buy the most expensive and nicest car that you can afford. You’ll never get ahead of the game by buying a restoration project.

The most prevalent years are 1987–`89.

Those were the largest production years. You can buy a really nice car for between 15 and 20 grand. The really, really nice cars are 25 grand and up.

You can’t get into a decent SSC for less than $25,000. They’re usually in the $40,000 range. Saleen made 17 supercharged hatchbacks in 1993. Those cars are $60,000 and up.

There’s a registry with all of the serial numbers. People can call Performance Autosport to authenticate every car.

Some of the parts are available and some aren’t. The one thing that I always tell people is avoid buying a car with torn-up seats.

The 1987–`91 cars had a Flo-Fit seat. Saleen had custom material made for those seats. You’re screwed if you buy an early car and the seats are hashed up.

No one makes material that looks close. I would buy an 80,000-mile car that looked like a 30,000-mile car before I bought a 30,000-mile car that was beat to poop.

The cars are fairly bulletproof.

RECENT SALE

Model: 1988 Mustang Saleen convertible
Price: $31,350
Condition: “Stock and unmodified condition”
From: Mecum at Indy, May 2018

RESOURCES

FlimFlam Speed & Custom Tuning
flimflamspeed.com
(804) 921-5341

Saleen Automotive, Inc.
saleen.com
(800) 888-8945

Saleen Club of America
saleenclubofamerica.com
(714) 400-2121

[Source: Grassroots Motorsports]

RED & SHORT, ANOTHER REGULAR CAB SPORTRUCK

From Saleen Automotive.

A few more pics of the latest SporTruck to roll out of the shop. She was born a little thirsty!

Click here to participate in the discussion.

[Source: Saleen Automotive]